All aboard the bike bus
Bus services between Palmerston North and Feilding have had an upgrade. Public consultation last year has resulted in a new and improved timetable with earlier and later buses, additional Saturday services, and bike racks attached to the front of the buses
Chair of Horizons’ passenger transport committee Rachel Keedwell says the bike racks are a great way to open up local cycleways to more people.
‘‘Now you can hop on and head to Feilding to cycle around the Feilding Cycle Loop, or travel from Feilding and try the Bridle Track in Palmerston North.’’
The bike racks are designed to carry two bikes with wheels larger than 40cms (16 inches) in diameter on a first-come, firstserved basis. Loading and unloading will be the responsibility of the passenger.
‘‘I encourage anyone with a passion for cycling or anyone who just wants to get more active, to go and utilise this fantastic new resource,’’ Rachel says.
Bike racks will be rolled out on all Horizons urban services from July this year. The provision will also be helpful to cyclists who have either punctured, are fatigued, or faced with inclement weather.
As for timetable improvements, daily return services on Saturday between the city and Feilding have increased by 300 per cent, from one to four.
Weekdays, there are now three extra daily return services, making a total of 14 during the school term.
The earliest buses leave the city’s Main St terminal at 7.10am, and travel via the hospital, air- port and Bunnythorpe to Manchester Square, to arrive at Feilding High School in North St by 7.54am before heading back to the Feilding train station. The second morning service departs the city at 7.40am on the same route to arrive at Feilding High by 8.19am.
Buses leave central Feilding from 6.55am, arriving at Main St via Bunnythorpe, the airport and hospital by 7.40am. During term time, the 7.30am and 7.45am services travel on to Palmerston North Girls’ and Boys’ Highs respectively to arrive by 8.30am.
In the afternoon, buses from the city run half-hourly between 4.30pm and 6pm. Off-peak, times have been tweaked so that regular services run approximately every 1.5 hours
Timetables are available from the Palmerston North and Feilding i-Sites, and online at horizons.govt.nz along with an instructional video for passengers on how to load and unload bikes from the front-mounted bike racks.
Signs of things to come. Horizons regional councillor Rachel Keedwell and Zach Brown 11, try out the new bus bike racks. Horizons’ Feilding buses are the first to be equipped with the racks, with the Palmerston North urban fleet following later in the year.